12.27.2008

Tecumseh: The Power in Pan-Indigenism




"When it comes time to die, be not like those whose hearts arefilled with the fear of death, so when their time comes they weep and pray for a little more time to live their lives over again in a different way. Sing your death song, and die like a hero going home." -Tecumseh


Tecumseh was a Shawnee leader, born is what is now Ohio, March 9, 1768. He was vary instrumental in the War of 1812 and fighting against the westward expansion of the 13 American colonies by seizure of Native lands. His name meant "Shooting Star" and/or "Crouching Panther". Interestingly enough, many of his own people followed behind his vision and movement, instead moving westward as the colonizers advanced. Still, the movement which sprang from his brother's, Tenskawatawa, religious visions' would leave their names in the book of life. Tenskawatawa, originally born 'Lalawethika', claimed to have had a "vision" and from this, began to teach against European occupation, advancement and against Native peoples adoption of white culture. Bearing witness to the devastation these things had on Native life, Tecumseh supported his brother and became the key voice in promoting the message. It would essentially become a Pan-Indigenous message and movement of identity, solidarity and sovereignty.


"The way, the only way to stop this evil is for the red man to unite in claiming a common and equal right in the land, as it was first, and should be now, for it was never divided."
We gave them forest-clad mountains and valleys full of game, and in return what did they give our warriors and our women? Rum, trinkets, and a grave.

Brothers -- My people wish for peace; the red men all wish for peace; but where the white people are, there is no peace for them, except it be on the bosom of our mother. Where today are the Pequot? Where today are the Narrangansett, the Mohican, the Pakanoket, and many other once powerful tribes of our people?

They have vanished before the avarice and the oppression of the White Man, as snow before a summer sun." -Tecumseh


Although they were opposed by many Shawnee and other Indigenous leaders, they managed in rallying many behind them and uniting Indigenous people in one common cause and effort. Each tribal Nation continued to maintain their traditions and way of life. Still, they united in the understanding that only their solidarity and movement as a body could preserve it. Regardless to the uniqueness in the manifestation of their specific cultural perspective and traditions, they recognized their commonalities as Indigenous people and their origin in this part of the planet earth. It was agreed that only a return to their people's ways, the wisdom of their ancestors, and a rejection of the devil's, could they succeed in the salvation of their people.


"But, brother, I mean to bring all the tribes together, in spite of you, and until I have finished, I will not go to visit your president. Maybe I will when I have finished, maybe. The reason I tell you this, you want, by making your distinctions of Indian tribes and allotting to each a particular tract of land, to set them against each other, and thus to weaken us.

You never see an Indian come, do you, and endeavor to make the white people divide up?"-Tecumseh



Tecumseh traveled across Indian land, seeking audiences and speaking to the people. He taught extensively and promoting the "oneness" of the Original people. His brother Tenskawatawa, The Prophet, continued teaching as well from their center in "Prophetstown", in Indiana. Over time it was said that Tenskawatawa become more fervent and militant with the teachings. Tecumseh eventually forbid his brother was speaking out too aggressively against whites or engaging in any conflict with them whenever he was not around. The movement flickered out in 1811, when Tecumseh was on a trip to meet with southern " 5 Civilized Tribes" and Tenskawatawa led his people into battle against future U.S. president, William Henry Harrison. Reportedly, Tenskwatawa sought to establish grounds for a peaceful talk with the then military commander. Yet, Tecumseh arrived to find Prophetown burned and destroyed.


"How can we have confidence in the white people? When Jesus Christ came upon the earth, you killed him, the son of your own God, you nailed him up! You thought he was dead, but you were mistaken. And only after you thought you killed him did you worship him, and start killing those who would not worship him. What kind of a people is this for us to trust? "- Tecumseh


Their vision and message continue on. Not just amongst the neo-political and Indigenous sympathizers. Not just on the reservation or in the mindset of the those marginalized by America. It is a, idea, message and vision that re-verberates within the ancestral memories of our senses and cells. Pan-Indigenism is the desire to be as 'one' with our brothers and sisters, from the Artic circle to Tierra Del Fuego. Just as we understand all of creation being are relations in the most fundamental form. It is this universal oneness that should bind those of us from the First Nations whether colonized by the English, French or the Spanish.


"Thus were we created. Thus we lived for a long time, proud and happy. We had never eaten pig meat, nor tasted the poison called whiskey, nor worn wool from sheep, nor struck fire or dug earth with steel, nor cooked in iron, nor hunted and fought with loud guns, nor ever had diseases which soured our blood or rotted our organs. We were pure, so we were strong and happy."-Tenskwatawa


We are the Original people on this part of the planet earth. The fathers and mothers of civilization as his has been known by our people in this hemisphere from the earliest of recognized space and time. It is time to re-unite the different organs of the body, so that we may harnass the power of change and seize the direction of our future. We must move with strength in our numbers and mobilize to become more self-sufficient and sovereign. We must build where we are at and within our communities, applying the supreme intelligence we are endowed with to enhance and elevate our condition. Through tribal networking and grass roots organizing, we can tap into our greatest resource, ourselves. We can not think that government and those who came to oppress are going to be the ones to assist in our relief. We must as well, not seek to return to the days since past. We must preserve the best of what we can from amongst our traditions and move forward with complimentary and progressive ideas that will both honor our ancestors and ensure our future survival. We can no longer linger in the tensions and problems between tribes as in the past. We must adapt, adjust and over come. Seeking unity beyond difference and victory beyond defeat. By isolating ourselves within the island of our own prejudices and cultural comfort, we create an environment for 'internal' decay. We become so self-absorbed as if colonization and globalization won't be able to penetrate us. We become strangers to our own brothers and sisters and apathetic to each others trials and tribulations, if we have not all suffered at the hands of the same oppressive entity. We allow the swiftness and currents of other words, ways and actions to strain relations with our universal family, swallowing us up in the remoteness of self-responsibility. Being responsible for ourselves means both our immediate family and our community and people, our collective 'self'. This is the path of righteousness, the way of the supreme mind.


"Do not eat any food that is raised or cooked by a white person. It is not good for us. Eat not their bread made of wheat, for Our Creator gave us corn for our bread. Eat not the meat of their filthy swine, nor of their chicken fowls, nor the beef of their cattle, which are tame and thus have no spirit in them. Their foods will seem to fill your empty belly, but this deceives you for food without spirit does not nourish you."- Tenskwatawa


We must reclaim our ownselves and find the sweatlodge within 'self', the the kacike of your own 'consciousness' and the vision quest in your own veins. We must awaken our cultural kundalini and let it rise like smoke from the ceremonial pipe. We must free ourselves from the encomienda of miseducation and move forward with the furthering of Pan-Indigenous consciousness and activism.


"I am Shawnee! I am a warrior! My forefathers were warriors. From them I took only my birth into this world. From my tribe I take nothing. I am the maker of my own destiny!- Tecumseh



Peace!

Original source of quotes: www.indigenouspeople.net/tecumseh.htm

11.27.2008

"Thanks-taking" and Imprisoning Disingenuous Commemorations of Benevolence


















The Kites in 13 Bars
Imprisoning Disingenuous Commemorations of Benevolence

By Sunez Allah, courtesy of Lavoe Revolt (http://www.lavoerevolt.blogspot.com/)

I form rhymes in alphabet soup
RZA – “Life Is A Movie”

It is that We be ‘softer than the flower, where kindness is concerned; Stronger than the thunder, where principles are at stake.’ The nature of these coming rains, they distill the eloquence of proper protest in actualization we must make. We, the 2 million, once prepared our roasting with a shared feast by funneling the fumes of squalor. Something like the moments where the diving petals of our Iris Germania tend to scour the Earth for a savior prior to their loller. This harvest festival like none other, where livelihood was unclothed with poisoned blankets, turkeys stuffed while infants snuffed commence the inauguration of unbonded words of treaty decorate coming banquets.

A scholar of much repute but little merit uttered that “these holidays say much less about who we really were in some specific Then, than about who we want to be in an ever changing Now.” Another dollar to rebuke is the only way to cherish with honor what has fluttered. The wholly Ways only the sincere may sense, shaped around those who have suffered from a horrific heathen. The end of truth can only provoke an ever exchanging How? for an endlessly decadent now.

From the rhythm of the spoon, I transform the loop
RZA – “Life Is A Movie”

The fashion of American protest is often the makings of clever concession. Time and again, we underwhelmingly reason with someone using the weaponry of oppression in the most worthy of manners. It is those immense few who realize that the nature of the supreme self is mathematical and the way of life is filled with these equations. These equations allow us to plot moments as patterns, with a special some that we may all commemorate with unique remembrance. These calendars have come to be labeled by our rulers and the flow of our mindset is mapped.

It is the great pressure of the popular pattern that adhere us to follow. So when pilgrim lore proliferates, bellies promote emptiness and the mind feigns fullness. That we have had enough of the idea of our peoples’ dead and gone; rather, I will eat and eat with thanks and praises as a Roman in his Yuletide. Yet the season of the heathen feast ends in fleeting moments where we are thankful our slaughter has been postponed. That our masters did not slay every last man, woman and child. Our annual productivity has once again spelled our captors as to our successful assimilation.

Yet, it is only the truth of oppression that can provoke the plots of liberation. Any living moment of man must never perish in memory without the lesson learnt.

With the steam of the bowl I make the special effects
RZA – “Life Is A Movie”

When the fires of awareness warm the mind, the dangers of ancestral anguish begin to dissipate into the solutions of understanding in one’s culture. To supremely prepare a feast with neither grain nor vegetable, vegan meat or tofu sweet is the fast of great statement. To turn the popular pattern of celebration with a contrasting sum of refusal gives one the forum of change. That we see the refusal to partake as the opportunity to create an actualization of what must be learned, allows us to share an enlightening truth and rejuvenate ourselves through reaffirmation.
From the rebellious statements of Cesar Chavez’ to the preparation unto the sweatlodge, the supreme Way effects change in the special embrace of non-doing.

Add a dash of spice, only God can detect
RZA – “Life Is A Movie

The people will gather their belongings of necessities and treasures, mercifully account for necessary relations and finally remunerate loved ones with priceless tenderness. As they thank the mysteries assigned for their givings, the knowing 5% left must see the Way prescribed.
There is no mysterious Being, energy or force that merits appreciation and that the culture of today is based on the understanding of yesterday. For the tomorrow that arrives must be a personal making of our powerful equality where the One as All see equanimously. Our cipher divine becomes such with our own endeavoring and every idea, action and insight matters.

Got a word to make a bear return to his cub
RZA – “Life Is A Movie



Share. The nature of all creation is the relationship of sharing. As we create, our creations inspire us. The reality of the Creator is sharing, the balance of giving and receiving. To offer thanks in such unassuming fashion, we slowly forgo the awareness that allows sharing to produce life. The simple belief of a better today dishonors tomorrow with such unfounded specters of hope. It is this inhibition to share the truth that has turned a natural state into an undesired responsibility of duty. A duty that provokes little more than assimilated survival in the children.

A word that make a girl come home from a club
RZA – “Life Is A Movie

Love. The relationship of supreme understanding that makes a home the nest of ideas. It turns recreation of satiety into the procreation of elevation. The possibility of revelation of purpose in every action becomes the way of life. No longer is it a militant act to rebuke commemorating the tales of past falsely told; rather, it is an embrace of equations personally calculated with fear of reprisal dissipating. What may be written in the time of feasting to fill our minds? How much beatitude fills the Earth when the words of what truly once was engage the dialogue of what can be?

A word that make a demon return back to God
RZA – “Life Is A Movie

Enlightenment, the endless accumulation and adherence of truths. It is a state that is only recognized with the awareness of mere survival’s ineptitude in shaping supreme beings. That the society that has passed through these Gregorian calendars doesn’t pattern a civilization. That the awareness of a greater civilization can provoke the righteousness of act for that greatest civilization forthcoming. And that the weakness provoked by fear and complacency has allowed wickedness to be unrecognized. The few that take the forum of truth on a day of assimilated reckoning step closer to the return to their essence. The death of mysterious cause with the answer of Self for all things first.

And the word that help Dorothy get home from Oz
RZA – “Life Is A Movie

Perfection. The world of corruption is but a magic show of illusion. Most hope to walk the path toward riches and wear the yellow robe of understanding. But can gold be alchemized to melanin? Without mistakes, the enlightened compose and perform the way of lessons to their children. How else can our ciphers zig zag zig and fulfill this endless path?

Thirty frames per second, these films we be reflecting
RZA – “Life Is A Movie”

Turkeys gobbled and stuffing excreted until another special undertaking we follow. If the slaves continue to merrily move each season, what plantation does not seem incredible?
Today, knowledge shared is a passive aggressive act. The truth is offered to us as a challenge of its own merits. ‘We killed them all. So what?’ For it to become wisdom, we must involve it in a superior pattern where insight is the possibility offered to our young. These little deeds of non-involvement, active refusal, cherished non-doing, dynamically embrace the films to pass on.

Scenes of light put through all projection
RZA – “Life Is A Movie

Illusion may direct dissatisfaction into immense action. However, awareness of illusion can provoke satisfaction into the action of questioning. It is not enough to know a truth and say it has no power. We must learn to give the truth a forum and allow it the ease of comprehension to all. In this, the most virtuous reality is not the imposing of a war but offering the choice of peace, the absence of confusion.

Electricity, connectivity
RZA – “Life Is A Movie

The intensity of the truth is measured by the conveyance of sincerity and the virtue of its usefulness to all at the right moment. We have sought the simple ways of obedience to connect us all. Yet there is no spark of our nature in this. There is only the fantastical utopia of infinite tolerance where all is accepted yet nothing is understood.

Audio and visually,”
RZA – “Life Is A Movie”

Actualization makes an idea seen and heard. In a society of forums offered with control, what is seen and heard is enjoyed but rarely discerned. To merely feast and thank the heavens for family’s continued survival is the most important medium of sharing lost. Does not the world look to the Supreme Nation for guidance, the Supreme Nation look to it’s Greatest societies to be well builders, these Great Societies to build up families of virtue, these Virtuous Families to instruct enlightened children?

Physically and mentally
RZA – “Life Is A Movie”

We will have some meal during Thanksgiving. It will slowly shape and mold us. This act of Thanksgiving will continue until the film rolls true and we direct our own future. Clearly, our principles are at stake. Whom must make rain, hail, snow and earthquakes if not my family Allah?

11.05.2008

Si Se Puede!




"We don't ask him to be a revolutionary, we don't ask him to be a socialist, only that, as a black man about to become president of the United States, he take his place in history..." - Hugo Chavez

Si Se Puede!

10.30.2008

'Dia de los Muertos': Physically Dead But Not Mentally






Peace,

Today’s mathematics is understanding cipher. 'Understanding' is the ability to see clearly, through the knowledge and wisdom present. A 'cipher' is a person place or thing. To gain an understanding of the cipher is to see clearly the reality of it and to be able to interact with it and relate to it accordingly. It is better to have an understanding than it is to be understood. So it is your own understanding and mental clarity that will elevate all circumstances and individuals.

Dealing with or showing understanding often means ‘empathizing” or conceiving of one’s relationship to someone or something. As adults we have the ability to draw up our understanding about something according to our own knowledge and experience. Children, because of lack of knowledge and life experience, can not. Still, they conceive of their own understanding, as it relates to them and their lives. So it is not to say that they are incapable of understanding, b-u-t rather, their understanding may not be as clear as an adults. That is why it is integral to be involved with the education of our children, hands on. To foster their growth and development and understanding of themselves, their culture and all other ciphers in the world/universe. Raising children outside the parameters of normal Western standards usually means combating against cultural ideas that do not parallel with our own. Especially in a individualist and materialist Judeo-Christian society. Yet, we continue to educate, encourage and raise our children to be efficient and effective with advancing in this society. To do so means that must have a understanding of the cipher. Regardless to the structure and environment we set up for our children we must recognize the fact that at some point in their lives there will be socialization with other people who think and live differently than them. We need to prepare them.

One way a children internalizes concepts about who they are is through cultural affairs, such as days of celebration. Every culture has days of observance or celebration, which have specific cultural significance to them. As Original people, many of our customs and celebrations have been destroyed and diluted through the menacing hand of colonialism and the church. Yet, many survived because of our enduring determination of self-preservation. Many of us have created our own days of recognition and celebration is the march towards to self-determination and preservation, as has the Nation of Gods and Earths. Whilst our traditions may only be 44 years old, this past October, our traditions and cultural celebrations are very important and significant to us. We observe days such as the Father’s Degree Day (Allah’s physical birthday), Days of the Babies, Universal Shaamgaud Day (the designer of our national flag), etc. Many observe October as being the foundation and first month in the birth of our Nation, others acknowledge the season of Fall. Some Gods and Earths observe the “Asiatic New Year” which is the Spring equinox. All of these are integral with created an a progressive and healthy environment for our children, instilling in them a strong sense of pride and love for one’s self and people. As with all cultures and people. Especially when we as adults decide to reject the ideology of the ‘system‘. We may be very comfortable with refraining from observing and/or celebrating Euro-centric or Capitalist holidays, however our children still don’t understand or warm up to the idea of them not being able to ‘do what the other kids do’. Even though we may educate them and give them knowledge as to why, the understand must come in time and must eventually be present. Otherwise they can end up resenting how they were raised because of it’s disconnectedness with other children. And kids being kids, it is developmentally appropriate for them to want to socialize and do what others do, in the name of fun. Despite the subtle or overt messages being conveyed in such celebrations as Halloween or Christmas, they simply do see it like that. They don’t have a historical framework through which to understand the science behind these days. They simply become magnetized and attract, because of it’s un-alikeness. So how to we compliment their curiosity and development while maintaining our own cultural principles, and still allow them to become orientated with the world and other people, especially their people. And by this I mean the millions of Original people who still observe and celebrate colonial and religious traditions. Because, despite the person choice we have made as adults to exclude ourselves and our families from such acitivities, many of our people still observe them and we must be careful not to cause divisiveness in our children’s thinking or cause them to think they are ‘different’, even though we raise them differently.














“…He wants us to think we are all different.”- 7th degree, 1-14

Allah understood this. He disagreed with religion strongly, and he didn’t see himself as having any obligation towards 'holidays' except in regards to the children. While it may be very controversial Allah understood what it is that he was doing. He didn’t instruct us to refrain from celebrating Christmas or Easter. Primarily because he was focused on reaching the children and wasn’t opposed to anything to put a smile on a child’s face. He understood that the Muslims and other black groups opposed Euro-centric holidays and sought out substitutes such as Kwanzaa (which is feasible in my perspective, for those seeking transition into a more culturally attuned lifestyle or even just as a seasonal event for children). Ultimately, Allah understood that if you take something away, you must be able to give something back. And many children were risking abandonment (many were already abandoned) by their families and being ostracized by their family, peers and society for advocating what he was teaching. So he dealt with understanding, and allowed them to entertain themselves with certain aspects of childhood in America. As well, Allah understood that celebrations such as Christmas, Easter, Valentine’s Day, etc, would be events which attracted many of our people who needed to be educated. So to exclude yourself from their social equality would be to exclude yourself from that population who needs you the most. It’s a worthless effort to try and educate someone about the history of Thanksgiving during the summer. Because that’s not where their mindset is at. It would be more effective to try and share some knowledge and wisdom with them at the table during Thanksgiving dinner and the only way to do that is to be with amongst them. As Allah had shown us, God doesn’t drop down upon the people, he comes up, from amongst the people. Thus, we need to strive to be in the world and not OF the world.

I have myself adopted a similar approach towards dealing with own my children. In our household we observe various days significant to the Nation of Gods and Earths. As someone of the Indigenous Diaspora, I as well observe certain days and traditions of Native and so-called Latin America origin. I chose to do so in the vein of promoting Indigenous and Latin solidarity and as a means to instill pride in my children concerning their specific ethnic lineage. Being a ‘Five Percenter’ has marginalized me in many ways from the day to day affairs of my brothers and sisters without knowledge of self, such as cerdo (pork) and religion. However, I still have a duty in elevating them and uplifting them, as well as making sure my children do not alienate themselves because of their lack of understanding, I.e. when my babies approach other Spanish-speaking children, proclaiming themselves as ‘black’ or that they don’t bear witness to God being in the sky. Likewise, I do not want my children to look down upon their own people just because they may not have a true knowledge of themselves. I strive to bring forth understanding in the cipher.

“…they are Original people…”- 3rd degree, 1-14



A particular day that is observed in my household is ‘Dia de los Muertos’. While it may have huge religious overtones, Dia de los Muertos or ‘Day of the Dead’ is actually a ritual celebration that predates the Spanish arrival in the Americas and extends back 3,000 years amongst the Mexica (Aztecs) and their celebration of the goddess 'Mictecacihuatl'. Mictecacihuatl was seen as "Lady of the Dead" and was thought to be the guardian of the underworld and the preserver of bones. People often compare Dia de los Muertos to ‘Halloween‘, and while at first glance there may appear similar, the two celebrations are actually quite different. ‘Halloween’ is a European holiday, or Celtic origin, that is based in their concept of death. This is quite different from the original Mexica meaning. The Mexica beliefs were very similar to the Kory/Aboriginal beliefs of Australia, whereas this ‘life’ is considered to be a ‘dream’ and when you die, you awaken. A concept the Kory call “Dreamtime”, the history before history. Skeletons and skulls were used as symbols for death and rebirth by the Mexica. Instead of fearing death, they embraced it and considered it a “moving-on” to a higher level of consciousness. Halloween, on the other hand, is celebrated with witches, demons and monsters. The Mexica originally celebrated Dia de los Muertos in August, however by influence of the church it was moved to the beginning of November (1st and 2nd), as they enforced “All Saint’s Day” and “All Soul’s Day” in efforts to erase the Indigenous tradition. The contemporary version most celebrated is a synthesis of Mexica and Catholic tradition. People throughout Mexico and Central America (and some places in the U.S.) make skeletons masks and costumes and have parties celebrating their ancestors. It was during this time that the ancestors are supposed to return and walk amongst the living. So people build altars in their home adorned with ancestors’ favorite drink and food, accompanied by pan de muerto, cookies and other food items, made in the image of skulls and skeletons. Many families in Mexico take these items, along with candles, to the cemetary where family members are buried, staying up at night to welcome their ‘spirits’, singing or telling stories, and honoring the memory of the ancestors.

“…never has revealed anyone returning from a physical death, but there is a chance for the mentally dead..” - 13th degree, 1-40


I will be both honest and respectful in saying that I do not subscribe to any of the above mentioned ‘beliefs’ about goddesses, ancestors and spirits. So how do I embrace Dia de los Muertos in my home, you may ask? We embrace it as a day of memorial for our ancestors. A day to celebrate their lives and legacies and to become closer with physical death, a reality of the living. We take time to build about those ancestors or relatives we may have recently lost, as well as those in our history, especially the Gods and Earths who made it possible for me to have knowledge of self and who illuminated the path of self-discovery and actualization for me. I take the time to explain to my little ones what ‘Dia de los Muertos’ really is and how it’s celebrated by most people, and why WE as Five Percenters don’t subscribe to the same ideas. It is important for them to understand that within our cultural paradigm, our ancestors live forever, in the hearts and mind of the people and why Allah told us that he could never die. Because very similar to the Aborigines and the Mexica, we advocate that everything in our lives is based on ‘thought’. We dialogue about Mexica culture and other similar traditions amongst other groups of Original people. Some activities we do is make paper masks of skulls with the kids, as well bake some ‘vegan’ pan de muerto and sugar cookies in the shape of skulls and skeletons. I am not appalled at the site of these images, for I have understanding of the cipher and strive to assist with the same in my babies. The skulls and skeletons are a way for them to become more comfortable with physical death, as a part of life. All things having a beginning and an ending. We build on the science of ‘transitioning’ (physical death) and energy as it transforms, since it can not be created or destroyed. We also study the bones and the body, so that can become more familiar with ‘themselves’. Referencing the role of 'Mictecacihuatl' in 'perserving bones', I like to add on about bones and them being related to the earth, and with the Original woman being 'the Earth' within the NGE paradigm, discuss the relevance between the 'physical' body and the physical world. The bones, being the only remains after someone physically perishes, which speaks marvels about the role of bones in our bodies. In Daoism, the bones are seen as holding significant life force, and proper meditation and exercise make the bones solid and ‘eternal’, as fundamental Daoists’ strive to become ‘immortal’. The 206 bones in the human body are also responsible for the production of red and white blood cells and the storing of vitamins and minerals. Which allows me to touch on the science of being “weak boned and wicked” (30th degree, 1-40) and the psycho-biological relationship in human beings. As well, the role that Mother Nature and the Original woman have in nurturing, nourshing and strengthening our bodies and bones through the right foods she provides.

For me and my family, Dia de los Muertos is a day to celebrate everyone who came before us and those we have lost along the way. It is a day to reflect upon are ultimately oneness with our ancestors, as we are the result of hundreds and thousands of years of their struggle, especially the last 516 years. For my children, to learn and understand that there are no ‘spirits’ coming to speak to them at night, because they are their ancestors, from cell to cell, brain to bolas. For as Allah taught us, any boy that doesn’t know who their ‘daddy’ is, all they need to do is look in the mirror and they’ll see him. They’ll be looking right at him.

Our history can’t be accurately documented by the Western world because of their bias and their absence when most of out history was being made. They have failed in both their attempts to trace our origins and plan our disappearance. The Original man has no beginning or ending. So with every attempt at erasing us from history, with every lie that the ‘Indians’ are long gone, we persist and continue on. We are living testaments to their lies. We haven’t gone anywhere and neither have our ancestors. I am them and they are me. For those who wish to sit and wait to talk to ‘spirits‘, to each his own. However, my ancestors speak to the world when ever I post a blog, write an article or put in work in my community.

Peace!

10.08.2008

Before Columbus...


...The Original Nation in the wilderness of North America.....as well as South...

Es importante aprender su historia....

9.26.2008

Pow Wow In Pittsburgh: Beike & Taino Creation Stories




American Indians share their culture through Pow Wow

By Sandra Fischione Donovan for THE TRIBUNE-REVIEW


Miguel Sague of Verona is a member of the Taino tribe, the Caribbean Indians who greeted Christopher Columbus in 1492. So he has a ready jokeabout Columbus' arrival in the Bahamas, where he landed while searchingfor India.


"He was lost, and we found him," says Sague, a native of Santo Domingo,Cuba, and member of the Council of Three Rivers American Indian Centersince 1977.


While Columbus' voyages are known worldwide, information about the Taino tribe is not as readily available. But Sague will help familiarize people with his tribe Saturday and Sunday at the Council of Three Rivers American Indian Center's 30th annual Pow Wow in Indiana Township.


Sague will tell stories that are traditional to the Taino and other tribes. He will wear different costumes for each tribe, including the Senecas, who settled in this area, he says. Sague, medicine man for the council, will invoke the male spirit of life and energy, and the female spirit of Mother Earth and nurturing.


Sague's extended family also will participate in the Pow Wow, orcelebration. His sister, Rosa John, and her husband, Melvin John, of Alberta, Canada, will act as masters of ceremony. The Johns and members of their family will perform various dances as part of the Kehewin Native Performance Troupe of Canada.


Russell Simms, executive director of the center, says the Pow Wow is important for a variety of reasons.


"It's a place where Native American people gather in fellowship, make new friends, share our culture and have fun," Simms says. "Because of who we are and how we do things and view life, we do not have a problem with sharing portions of our life. We invite the public to take part.We're trying to encourage the general public to participate so they canlearn."


The Pow Wow will open each day with a grand entry featuring all native dancers. Among the entertainment will be drumming, Aztec dancers, a hoopdancer, and men's and women's fancy dances. Native American crafts will be featured, and vendors will sell Native American foods such as buffalo burgers, native chili, fry bread and corn on the cob. American fare like hot dogs and traditional hamburgers also will be available.


Proceeds from the Pow Wow will go toward the Council of Three Riverscenter, a United Way agency that promotes the socio-economic developmentof 8,000 to 10,000 American Indians in the Pittsburgh area.


The center operates a Head Start program, a child learning center, afoster and adoption program, an elder program and employment centers inthree states and the District of Columbia, among others. Some of itsprograms are open to people from non-Indian backgrounds.

9.19.2008

Council of Three Rivers 30th Annual Pow Wow




Council of Three Rivers American Indian Center's
30th ANNUAL POW WOW

Will Be Held On: September 27th and 28th
Noon to 7:00 p.m. (rain or shine)
Donations: Adults-$6.00, Elders & Children Under 12-$4.00
120 Charles Street, Dorseyville, PA 15238-1027
412-782-4457 or www.cotraic.org

Singing, Drumming, Dancing, Arts, Crafts
Demonstrations & Native Foods
No drugs or alcohol allowed!

Special Features Include:
The Aztec Dancers from Mexico, Hoop Dancer,
Dramatized Legend “The Eagle’s Gift”

Taino Music & Dance Dramatization of the Legends
“How the Ocean Came to Be” and “Turtle Mother”

And more...

For more information please contact: powwowies1@hotmail.com

Quilombo: Self Savior and Slave Revolts


Paz! Peace! Tau!

El grado en el supremo alfabeto es 'salvador es un mismo'.


So often when learning about our history do we place emphasis on slavery, both mental and physical. The effects of it have been documented and the rammifications of it are undeniably seen in the ways and actions of the people. Not only did it do so much in the stripping away of our identity, it also served as an incubator for many elements of African and Indian culture, to be nurtured into other displays of dignity and identity. So much is made of the eventual conquest of our people and so little is mentioned of the uprisings and rebellions. It should be no surprise to understand that such events would no doubt serve as the seeds to usher in further rebellion and restlessness in the people. The oppressor has subsequently worked hard at the propaganda for their campaign against us, for the last 516 years and miseducation has been a major pipeline for the dispersal of lies and 'his-story'. Another important factor in the silencing of the resistance movements against colonialism has been to instill in us a sense of being docile, of being naturally 'unable' to even conceive of revolting against our oppressor. This is especially true when discussing the history of Boriken (Puerto Rico) and the false identity painted for us by the likes of various politicians and elitists throughout the last 110 years.





One thing that has also been in the forefront of our agenda was 'saving of selves'. Self-preservation is the first law of nature and a mechanism inherent in all creatures. However, in order to make someone think that you have complete control over them, you have to get them to the point where they think they have no power over themselves. You make them think they are incapable of relieving themselves from harsh conditions with the intent of lodging into the brains of their generations to come, the assumed inevitably of their servitude.

The reality is far from what we are cordially given. Indians and Africans frequently rose up against the colonizers and planned escapes into the deep forests and jungles of Amekikia- North, Central and South. In the Caribbean, these 'runaways' were called 'maroons'. They fled to the hills, mountains, jungles and caves to live a life of freedom and harmony. Many of these settlements or 'quilombos' flourished for years and waging multiple battles against the Europeans. As William Lorenz Katz points out in his article entitled, "Africans and Indians- Only in America":

Centuries before the Declaration of Independence talked of natural rights and sanctioned rebellion against tyranny, African-Indian alliances acted on these concepts as they pursued their American dream in the mountains beyond the white settlements dotting the coastline. In 1537 Viceroy Mendoza of Mexico, lamenting an insurrection by Africans, admitted, "the Indians are with them." As slave revolts rocked the new European outposts in the Americas, they also enjoyed Native American support.

In hard-to-reach backwaters of the Americas, two people of color people began to build their own "maroon" colonies. Some were outlaw bands, raiders who preyed on whites, slaves and Indians alike, and lived a short, brutish life. But other maroons depended on family farming and herding and built peaceful relations and trade with Indian villages, slaves, and former masters.

European officials judged maroons, in the words of a French historian, "the gangrene of colonial society." Their success as independent economic societies refuted white claims of African inferiority. Each day Maroons proved once slaves wrenched free they could govern themselves and prosper. Further, maroon encampments served as beacons for discontented slaves in a radius of a hundred miles, and stood as a clear and present danger to the European conquest. Some whites saw maroons as a knife pressed against the thin line of their rule, and they had a point.

In a clockwork of military and legal reflexes, European authorities sought to eradicate Black Indian contacts and pit Red against Black. In l523 a Royal Order to Hernando Cortez banned Africans from Indian villages. "Division of the races is an indispensable [control] element," said a Spanish officer. "Between the races we cannot dig too deep a gulf," announced a French official.

Well-trained European armies ordered to crush maroon colonies met their match in distant mountains and jungles. "[Maroon] self-respect grows because of the fear whites have of them," a white Brazilian wrote to King Joao of Portugal in l719. Maroon songs resonated with victorious pride:

Black man rejoice. White man won't come here.
And if he does, the Devil will take him off.
(from- http://www.williamlkatz.com/Essays/History/AfricansIndians.php)

One of the most famous was called Palmares, in Brazil. By the 1690's , the population of Palmares was around 20,000. There was a movie produced in 1984 called "Quilombo" that goes into the details of the struggle against slavery in Brazil, by are enslaved brothers and sisters there. It in many ways can be likened to a South American version of Alexis Haley's "Roots" saga. Please check out the following clip:




Fast forward to the here and the now. What you see is the government taking the necessary steps to dismantle what could be precieved as modern-day 'quilombos'.

Through 'genetrification', we see the battle against crime and poverty by the reinvestment and redevelopment of previous undesirable lands, lands we were forced to reside within. And being very well aware that the power resides within the people to change their own conditions, the government is dismantling the once communities of color and attempting to break the bond that fo so long allowed brothers and sisters living next to each other had, the common denominator of 'struggle'. The oppressor also knows and understands that power is in numbers and by dispersing our communities they quell even the 'potential' for uprising.


To be the savior of one's self we most be self-sufficient...


Protect and Preserve Community! Only the 'hood can save the 'hood!

9.08.2008

"Renewing History" and the 2012 Prophecy




Peace! Tau!


In a time of turmoil and destruction on the planet, many people think it is the end of the world. For years Europeans have clung to the Bible for interpretations of events in time, especially the future. They have also held a special place in their paranoia for the predications of Nostradamus. What they and others have failed to understand is the predicating the future is a matter of forecasting events based on the NOW. The events, and behaviors of beings on the planet that usher in these events and conditions, can be analyzed, assessed and understood through general sociological, psychological and anthropological frameworks. History is made based upon these predications, take for instance the actual price of oil and what determines it. It is then that history has been predicted by the 'wisest' amongst us. This is understood within the Nation of Gods and Earths- that 'now' is the past, present and future. Yet, in their search of religious and spiritual understanding and fervor, modern 'new agees' have pointed their fingers at the Mayan cosmology and the 2012 prophecy as the latest fix in figuring out the fate of humanity.


Unfortunately, because of this, many scholars, scientists and of course, politicians, have dismissed the Mayan prophecy as amongst the usual cultural folk-tales of the pre-Columbian world. When the reality is that the Popol Vuh and Mayan cosmology has some scientific basis for us to understand ourselves and the universe. The idea of a cyclical period of time coming to an end and ultimately renewing is not new and surely isn't limited to the Quiche Maya.


The Popol Vuh is a wonderful work on Indigenous literature. The Mayan credit the founding of there cosmology and culture with Votan. Votan is mentioned in the Popol Vuh and is sometmimes referred as "an old black God". Votan is said to have arrived from the East, across the Ocean wearing a robe, as well was his followers. He is known as a 'magician' of time, because of his understanding of mathematics and numbers, as a 'language' for understandingman's relationship to the cosmos and vice versa. He is said to have made the statement "All is number. Hunab K'u (God) is a number. Hunab k'u is in All." This is an interesting way to express the Maya's understanding that we are interconnected with each other and the universe. All of life is structured by the same basic, re-occurring mathematical patterns. Thus, the Mayan civilization and cosmology is based on their extensive understanding of mathematics and in particular the movement of celestial bodies which they base their calender on. They had two calenders which they used, the Long count and the Short count. The Short count was based on 260 days and the Long count calender on 360 days. It was through these calenders that the Mayan calculated time in accordance with the movement of the Sun, Moon and Earth. Votan supposed taught them about the science of time and "ages", cycles of time lasting 26,000 years. Sumerians, Tibetans, Egyptians, Cherokees, Hopi, and Mayans all refer to this same 26,000 year cycle in their cosmologies.


"Who wrote the Holy Qu'ran or Bible? How long ago? And will you tell us, why does Islam renew it's history every 25,000 years?"


The Holy Qu'ran or Bible is made by the Original man, who is Allah, the supreme being, blackman of Asia. The Holy Qu'ran will expire in the year 25,000, 9,080 years from the date of this writing. The Nation of Islam is all wise, right and exact. Planet Earth's, which is the home of Islam, circumference is approximately 25,000 miles, so the wise man of the East (the blackman) makes his history or Qu'ran equal to his home cricumference, 1 year to every mile. Thus everytime it lasts for 25,000 years, he renews it for another 25,000."


This above question and answer is the first degree in a set of lessons referred to as the 1-40, within the Nation of Gods and Earths. The lessons we study are sets of questions and answers between Fard Muhammad and his student Elijah Muahmmad. They are shared by the Nation of Islam and the Nation of Gods and Earths and for us, serve as a general body of information from whcih we extract a clearer understanding about life from. As one can see, Fard and Elijah were familiar with the plantery phenomena known as the 'procession of the equinoxes', which is the 'wobbling' of the Earth, making the Sun appear (except to the naked eye) as if it is making a revolution or full circle in space. It takes the Earth in actuality 25,800 to 26,000 years to complete one 'wobble'. This movement was very significant to our ancestors and their understanding of the Sun and Earth's relationship, as it pertained to their calender and events on the planet. Let us recall that the 'Sun and moon have attracting powers on our planet' (8th degree, 1-40) and affect not only the magnetic field around the planet but also the life existing within it. The electromagnetic relationship of the Sun with the Earth varied at different points of the year due to the position of each celestial body. The Sun and Moon both have attracting powers on the water on the Earth's surface and in vary mouch the same way, affect the water in our bodies. This is what supposed brings about the distinct characteristics of people born at different times of the year and the 'zodiac' figures that represent those times. The Mayan had there own 'zodiac' and it played such an important role in their daily lives. "A person's date of birth also had enormous significance: it determined the course of the rest of his or her life, including name and career.." states Adrian Gilbert and Maurice Cotterell in their book "The Mayan Prophecies."


Elijah Muhammad referred to this 25,000-26,000 year calender as the "Asiatic calender". The above mentioned degree was compiled in 1934. As we renew the history and further investigate the subject at hand, we find that Elijah, basing his understanding obviously on pre-existing conceptions of history and time, projected the end of this time period to be "9,080 years from that date of this writing", which would have at that time, being the Asiatic year 15,020. However, 9,080 years would only take history to the date of year 24,100. Providing the missing 900 years (thus making the calculation 9,980 years) would take us to the year 25,000 which would be the Gregorian year "11,914". This is a huge gap. And as I've said, through further investigation, studying, & learning we come to find out that the Original man- whether Votan himself or the Mayans (Natives) who supposedly travelled from the East, or the people Votan travelled away from, calculated the most accurate calender regarding the movement of the Sun and Earth. Let us be mindful that the Gregorian calender actually has daylight savings time and leap years to allow it to function because it is not aligned with the celestial bodies. Especially now, time as Western scientist's have determined is based on the number of vibrations of a Cesium atom (measured with an 'atomic clock').


So what does all this mean? It means that Elijah Muhammad was 'right' although not 'exact' because the Mayan astronomers (wise men) calculated this time of renewal as December 22, 2012 in the Gregorian calender. Likewise, it means that more credence must be lent to the Mayan prophecies and approached more seriously. It also means that the various religious books of the world hold 'some' truths as it regards man's recording of events and their relationship to the world as they knew it. Whether it be the Bible, Qu'ran, Popol Vuh or Rig Vedas. These books were authored by man, the Original man, and divinely inspired only so far as being a manifestation of man's divine intelligence. For the wisest amongst us have always been able to take a look at our history, to understanding the present, and tell of what 'could' come of the future. Remember, as we authored the book, through our awareness and activity, we have the power and ability to re-write it. This ultimately was Votan's message. As the ending of this age, means more so an end of the old world and way of thinking (which got us into the situation that exists on the planet) rather than the 'end of the world' as religious fanatics and pseudo-spiritualist believe. The Mayans refer to this as the end of the 'age of God' or, the 'end of religion' if we look further into it. And as Allah taught us within the Nation of Gods and Earths, we got to "kill all religion". For it is religion that has allowed the people to succumb to mental death and power and flung Nation against Nation in warfare. Now is the time for us to truly 'wisdom our equality' (26) and apply more balance to ourselves, the planet and ultimately the universe . 2+6= 8, which is Supreme Mathematics is "build and destroy", today's mathematics. So it is through the end of this age do we continue to build and add on for a better tommorrow or be destroyed by our own devilishment. GOD= G(7)+O(15)+D(4)= 26 and 2+6=8. So the Original man (black, brown(red) and yellow), who is Allah (GOD) or Hunab K'u, will ultimately determine the construction of a new world and the destruction of the old.


Peace!


A Plus degree: Making the lessons applicable to this day and time....


"Who wrote the Popol Vuh or 'The Community Book'? How long ago? And will you tell us, why does mathematics renew it's history every 26,000 years?"

The Popol Vuh or 'The Community Book' was made by the Original man named Votan, who is Allah (Hunab K'u), the supreme being, blackman of Asia. The Popol Vuh or 'The Community Book' will expire in the year 26,000, 4 years and 3 months from the date of this writing. The Nation of Gods and Earths is all wise, right and exact. Planet Earth's, which is the home of Islam, circumference is approximately 25,000 miles, so the wise man of the East (the blackman) makes his history or 'Popol Vuh' equal to his home circumference, 1 year to every mile. Thus everytime it lasts for 26,000 years, he adds on and renews it for another 26,000."

9.07.2008

A 'Taino' Documentary




I found a documentary about nuestra gente, the Tainos. The documentary looks into the history of the Taino people and examines, to a degree, the resurgence in Taino identity in the Caribbean community. While the scientist seems rather skeptical to admit validation of a true modern Taino identity (probably because of the standard set forth by the department heads of his particular, who cut his check) he does brings about a some worth noting- that the Spanish brought Indigenous slaves from other Islands and places around the Caribbean. This means that someone may be from Puerto Rico, Cuba or Jamaica, etc., and have Indigenous blood, but not Taino blood. Especially later, as the French began transporting Native slaves from the Great Lakes area to the Caribbean to sell. It is a shame that, as author Vine Deloria J.R. used to speak on, we allow Western science to be used against us in the same manner as Western religion. We tend to accept things from various fields of science without ever really questioning the motives and agenda of the institutions themselves. The 'lie' is in how scientist claim to approach their research with so much unbiased when in reality they are financed by governments, universities and areas of the private sector to do their work in the first place.

"He likes the Devil because the Devil put fear in him when he was a little boy."- 8th degree, English C. Lesson No. 1

We have been lied to since the earliest age and throughout our lives through the educational institutions, government agencies and media that sought to assume their paternalistic role over us. We were told that the 'Indians' were extinct and taken through a wicked maze of blood quantum propaganda. And generations of children have thus perpetuated myths about our identity, in fear of retribution from our oppressor. However, Amekikia is awakening and the Wilderness of ignorance that stifles our peoples road to peace and happiness will clear. As the light of knowledge is shown on the path of the those who seek it.



8.26.2008

So-called "Hispanic" Heritage Month



Despite my own contentions with the term "Hispanic" because of its obvious conveyance of Spain's cultural dominance over our identity, the following article is good. It shows the denial and reluctance to accept who we are as so-called "Latin Americans" which stems from the conditioning and miseducation we received over the past 516 years of oppression. This labels of identity, fostered by someone other than our own selves, that we ultimately aligned ourselves with and pledge allegiance to, as if the people who created these terms had the majorities best cultural interest in mind.

Afro-Latino’s View on National Hispanic Heritage Month
Written by Christopher Rodriguez - Blacktino.net

"National Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated throughout the nation between the dates of September 15 and October 15, to observe the historical contributions Hispanics/Latinos have made in the United States especially in the arts, literature, music, politics and education.

Since I was born in the United States, this was a great opportunity to celebrate the diversity of people, which has become a hallmark of our nation’s history.

It is one of my favorite times of the year that allows me the opportunity to attend numerous cultural events and I can taste food samplings from all over Latin America and the Caribbean. I get to see dance troupes, panel discussions, keynote speeches highlighting the positive aspects of Hispanic/Latino culture.

However, in the late 1980’s, I was serving as EEO Manager at a major scientific research and development agency, and I decided that it would be a good idea to celebrate the contributions of Africans in the Americas. I invited Dr. Marta Vega, a pre-eminent Afro-Caribbean Scholar and founder of the Caribbean Cultural Center in New York City. As a History major, I was taught by Puerto Rican and other Latin American Scholars that Latino culture is an amalgam of Spanish, Indian and African cultures. I was working on the assumption that it would be interesting for everyone, especially African American employees who were not aware of the African presence in the Spanish speaking Americas.

I naively organized this event to educate employees in our federal workforce about the diversity of Latin American culture, and showcase the African contribution to Latino culture, as we know it today. Much to my dismay, I received a flood of phone calls from Latino employees asking why was I planning a Black activity during Hispanic Heritage Month. I was truly amazed at the uneducated responses, because these employees were individuals with advanced graduate degrees, who had received training at some of the most prestigious universities in the world. Yet, they were totally miseducated about the African contributions in their homelands.

Even when I presented the callers with historical facts, I was unable to assuage their concerns, because they may have seen my actions as divisive. They perceived this activity would elicit racial discussions, which will divide employees based on race. I decide to go ahead with the event despite the fact that they decided not to attend. The activity was well attended by primarily a non-Latino audience, who appreciated the new found knowledge they received from Dr. Vega. I guess my Latino compatriots decided to go on strike and not attend the event.

Initially, I was emotionally wounded from this experience, because I started remembering my own grandparents who were people of obvious African descent, who could not celebrate their time and contributions on this earth. How could it be divisive to celebrate my own family? Even though while growing up my Christian parents shielded me from the whole discussion of race, because according to them we were all children of God. Obviously, these arguments were a pretext for something which was deeply ingrained in the cultural upbringing of most Latinos.

I did not want to dismiss it as simply racism, but the question remained what are the historical roots of these sentiments, and how can I address this issue in a strategic fashion? The idea came to mind to, that I must write a book about the roots of these racial sentiments and attack the mythology that racism is not a factor in Latin American and Caribbean culture. The experience of researching and reviewing historical documents of the race based immigration policies; abolitionist’s movements in Spain and the Caribbean; educational policies and labor laws governing people of color in the Americas; was a journey comparable to Alex Haley’s famed book “Roots.”

As a result, I have gained incredible spiritual strength from my wounds, and this has led me to places I would never have imagined. The ancestors showed me how to turn this experience from being a lemon into lemonade. As National Hispanic Heritage Month comes closer, I want to encourage all Afro-Latinos to think about what will be your contribution to the education of our people, and serve as a bridge to Latinos and African Americans and highlight the commonalities of our legacies in the U.S. and the rest of the Americas."

Christopher Rodriguez is an activist, author and lecturer and has written a book entitled the Latino Manifesto: A Critique of the Race Debate in the U.S. Latino Community. For more information go to www.Latinomanifesto.com.

© Copyright 2007 Blacktino e-News Network

Original source: Blacktino.net

8.20.2008

The Universal Language




Struggle: The Universal Language
Written by Infinite Rahe Allah

“It is not easy for men to rise whose qualities are thwarted by poverty.”
Juvenal (55 AD - 127 AD)


This coming August 15th 2008, Paraguay will be inaugurating their new president, Fernando Lugo, sometimes referred to as “the bishop of the poor.” The people of Paraguay are hoping for a leader to bring radical and broad sweeping changes to the country. They are hoping for a strong president with firm leftist views. The poor of Paraguay are looking for someone to address the issue of land reform.

In Paraguay, the wealth is the land. According to the Paraguayan constitution, every person is entitled to a piece of land. Currently, 1% of the country’s seven million people own 77% of productive land. In the meantime, 45% of Paraguay’s population is in poverty. Much of the poor are landless people. Paraguay’s poor rely on subsistence farming. They need the land solely to grow food to feed their families. There is a dire need to redistribute the land amongst the poor. The poor are growing weary of requests from the government to be patient. There lives are on the line.

This dissatisfaction is leading some of the poor to resort to land invasions of the wealthy. These land invasions result in destruction of property, burning of tractors in some instances, as well as reports of hostages taken. Desperate actions like these will undoubtedly force the government to put down such uprisings with violent force (police, military). Unfortunately, if it comes to the use of force to resolve these matters, the poor in Paraguay will be painted as savages in much the same way as the poor in Louisiana trying to survive Hurricane Katrina.

The events in Paraguay impact original people in the U.S. by serving as a reminder of the constant hurdles many of us face. Those hurdles are comprised of lack of educational resources in inner city public schools, fewer prospects for decent paying jobs, and societal ills like drugs and crime.

In poor urban areas populated by black and brown people, school resources like textbooks, class space, and staff are often scarce. This reality often leaves our children at a disadvantage. Overcrowded classrooms place an undue burden on instructors to adequately provide the learning environment our children need. Class sizes are often as large as 35-40 and in some cases 50 students in a class.

Statistics from the 2007 U.S. Census reveal that black and so called Latinos 18 years and older are graduating from high school at approximately the same rate as whites. Although blacks and Latinos are graduating at the same rate as whites, they are not as well prepared academically for college. At the four year college degree level, black and Latino people dip in their stats. 10% of blacks and Latinos finish four year degrees compared to 20% of whites. This is certainly a recipe for failure. A four year degree is a useful tool in a competitive job market where the goal is a career or job that can provide financial security.

Before the college level, the poor prospects of securing decent paying jobs for blacks and Latinos complicates the education of their children. According to the 2006 U.S. Census, 20% of black and Latino families are living below the poverty line compared to only 7% of white families. Black and Latino parents are often forced to work two jobs to provide for their families. This leaves them little time to reinforce their children’s learning at home. By the time parents get home, they are often too exhausted to review homework and stay up on issues with children in school.

This is a spiraling effect because poor families that live in impoverished communities have to send their children to public schools that are underfunded because of the tax bracket of that community. Let’s face it: those parents are products of that same poor public education system. They need to review the “new math” themselves before they can offer any assistance to their children.

The “new math” is not just the struggle to remember some old algebra and geometry concepts. On another level, it can be viewed as the systemic calculations that multiply the impact of drugs and violently divide the community between the living and the dead. The impact of drugs and violence has put to sleep the community scholars, revolutionaries, and young stars who never had a chance to shine.

Whether you’re in Paraguay without access to useful land or in the U.S. without access to quality education, decent jobs, and stable communities, the underlying reality is lack of resources equates to a constant cycle of poverty. In Paraguay, land reform is desperately required and in the U.S education, employment, and community reform are required to reverse the cycle of poverty

Original Source: www.originalthoughtmag.com (Get a subscription, burros!)

"Unifying the Body"
















Venezuelan Indian Affairs official seeks solidarity among hemisphere's indigenous peoples

Visit to Sioux Nation is first step in forging unity

CHEYENNE RIVER SIOUX RESERVATION, S.D. - The Venezuelan vice minister for Indigenous Affairs visited four Lakota communities in early August to explore possibilities for friendship, student and cultural exchanges and other mutually beneficial projects between the Native peoples here and in the South American country.

Aloha Nunez, a member of western Venezuela's Wayuu tribe, spent five days among Sioux Nation people at Cheyenne River, Lower Brule, Rosebud and Pine Ridge. At 25, Nunez is the youngest person to hold a ministerial office in Venezuela. She was accompanied by Yancy Maldonado, a Yekwana tribal representative from Venezuela's Ministry of Indigenous Affairs, and Sabine Kienzl from the embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela in Washington, who acted as an interpreter.

The Ministry for Indigenous Affairs was created in January 2007 in order to boost policies that benefit Venezuela's many Native communities in line with the country's 1999 constitution, which guarantees indigenous rights for the first time in Venezuela's history.

''This has been a particularly exciting experience,'' Nunez said of her visit with the Lakota communities in a press release. ''We have been able to witness how the traditions and culture are still alive here. This has been a first step for the contact of our peoples. We hope to come back and establish more direct contacts with other communities in the United States.''

More than 200 people welcomed Nunez to the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe's reservation, where she spoke about Venezuela's current programs and plans to benefit that country's indigenous communities. She also explained the ministry's goal is to forge unity and solidarity among all the indigenous peoples of the Americas ''in their struggle and resistance for more than 500 years of oppression. Before, we used to be ashamed of our backgrounds. Nevertheless, we are now experiencing a revival of our ancestral roots and traditions.''

The Lakota communities participate in Venezuela's CITGO Petroleum Corp.'s discounted heating oil program, which was established in 2005 to help poor communities deal with harsh winters and rising energy costs. More than 200 tribal communities across the northern U.S. benefit from the program.

But the vice ministerial visit was to foster personal relationships and exchanges, Kienzl told Indian Country Today.

''It was really a great trip. The object was to just start a dialogue with Native people here, to get to know each other and to cooperate in various areas in the future. Native tribes in Venezuela know very little about tribes here in the U.S. It was a very good opportunity for the vice minister to see the reality of the U.S. Native tribes, which is very different from what is being portrayed by the media outside.''

One of the issues that she said shocked the vice minister is the high suicide rate among Native youth.

''This cannot be. This is terrible. Twenty-seven people committed suicide just on the Rosebud Reservation in the last three years and 80 percent of them were young people! This is not acceptable.''

Native peoples in Venezuela don't share these same problems, Kienzl said.

''The whole system is different there. The Native peoples are not considered dependents. They have their own territories, their own land where they can practice their own legal system, their own criminal system, their own rules and their own cultures, but they also have representation in the government since they are not nations apart like here.''

She said Native peoples here know little about their counterparts in Venezuela, too.

''People on the reservations generally know nothing about what's going on in Latin America. The Indian peoples in Latin America have become very, very strong political actors in the last decade. There is so much going on so I think putting people here in touch with their counterparts in Venezuela would really enrich both parts.''

Cheyenne River Sioux Chairman Joseph Brings Plenty could not be reached for comment because he was already in touch with some of his counterparts by attending the Inaugural Indian and Anti-Imperialist Warriors of the Americas Congress in Caracas along with two other Native representatives from the U.S.

The congress gathered delegations from throughout the world. During the congress, Chavez swore in 18 delegations from various countries as nonviolent warriors who will fight against ''misery and imperialism.''

In an e-mail to Kienzl, which she shared in part with ICT, Joseph Brings Plenty wrote, ''I love Venezuela. It has been great being here. I have had so many wonderful experiences. I got to meet and see some of the peoples and their cultural dances. I also participated in one. It was lovely. The vice minister also danced. It was wonderful.

''I was very impressed by her tribal people. The indigenous peoples of South America are beautiful. I felt like my spirit had truly been lifted. I'm witnessing a unity of indigenous peoples that I have never witnessed before in my life.''

That's the whole point of exchange, Kienzl said.

''People here, especially on the reservations in the Midwest, because of their difficulties - the oppression, the problems with alcohol, the drugs, the unemployment - I feel the people are sad and they've become resigned to a certain extent and they need to be motivated.

''They need to see that alternatives are possible, that there are Native peoples in other countries that also faced very difficult situations in the past, but they became strong and got united and they achieved a lot both in the political and economic areas. It's possible to get out of this situation. This was one of the most important messages of the vice minister: that only through unity is there strength.''

Original source: www.indiancountry.com/content.cfm?id=1096417959

Posted from: www.angryindian.blogspot.com

8.19.2008

A Novel Discusses Asian Latin America




Monkey Hunting: Asia meets Latin America in a novel

The newest novel by Cuban-American writer, Cristina Garcia, narrates the story of five generations of a Chinese-Cuban family

"What do you get when you cross thousands of years of Chinese dynasties with the sugarcane plantations of 19th Century Cuba and the rhythm of the African slaves? Well, in addition to an exciting travel in time, you get Monkey Hunting (Alfred A. Knopf, 2003) Cuban-born Cristina Garcia’s latest novel.


“This was the hardest thing I’d ever written because it was so far from my own experience,” Garcia said in a recent interview with the independent paper, LA Weekly. “I had to keep fighting off self-inflicted charges of ‘Fraud!’ every working day of it. Basically, my main character is a 19th-century Chinese male. Need I say more?”


That man is named Chen Pan, a failed farmer who left China after signing a contract to work “beyond the edge of the world to Cuba.” But as soon as he arrives at the island, he’s sold to slavery and forced to work in a sugarcane plantation. The novel spans five generations of the Chen family, including Chen Pan’s granddaughter, Chen Fang, who’s raised as a boy in China, and Domingo Chen, Chen Pan’s great-great-grandson, who after the Revolution migrates to New York and ends up in Vietnam...."

Original link: http://www.laprensa-sandiego.org/archieve/may16-03/monkey.htm

Asian Ancestry in the Americas




The visitors are descendants of Koreans lured to the Yucatan Peninsula a century ago by false promises. In ensuing decades, they spread to other parts of Mexico and abandoned the Korean language.

By Hector Becerra, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
August 16, 2008


The teenagers and young adults struggled as they rehearsed an ancient Korean song, a kind of lamentation to leaving home.

"Uno, dos, tres," began Fermin Kim, 48, a chaperon for the group.

Arirang, Arirang, Arariyo. . . .

The words burbled out in a discordant drone, tentatively and unsteadily -- sounding very much like, well, Mexicans suddenly asked to sing in Korean.

The young Korean Mexicans had arrived from Mexico City, Tijuana and the Yucatan Peninsula on a recent afternoon and come to a sprawling Lynwood shopping center designed to look like Mexico. As they were dropped off by shuttles, they passed a statue of Mexican independence leader Miguel Hidalgo and a replica of the Angel of Independence in downtown Mexico City.


They came, perhaps fittingly, to Plaza Mexico -- a place that was created by a Korean American who has a habit of slipping into Spanglish.

Los Angeles is a city where the large Mexican and Korean communities co-exist in ways that both bring them together and separate them. They share the immigrant experience and communication barriers that come with it. But the different languages -- Spanish and Korean -- can also be an obstacle.

Here, however, the fusion was literal. The teens and twentysomethings bear strong Korean features but consider themselves true Mexicans. Even their older chaperons, Fermin Kim and David Kim, 70 (not related), no longer spoke Korean -- though they are third- and fourth-generation Korean Mexicans who have no Mexican blood.

The group of 20 were to perform that night for Korean and Mexican dignitaries in one of the banquet halls. They practiced the Korean folk song over and over, as Korean Americans and Latino waiters looked on. They only really felt comfortable when they started to consider which Mexican song to perform.

"And all for what, and all for what, if in the end you lose?" Rafael Kim, 23, of Mexico City crooned.

They were the descendants of Koreans lured in 1905 by ship to plantations on the Yucatan Peninsula in southern Mexico. Instead of finding a better life, they were sold to plantation owners and forced to cultivate henequen, a plant whose tough fiber was used to make things like rope.

The Koreans and their descendants would come to be known as the Henequen, in part because they were so hardy and hard-working. They had fled a Korea that was under Japanese rule, and despite their struggle, they sent money back home, hoping to help their countrymen gain independence. But few ever saw their homeland again.

In the ensuing decades, they spread to other parts of Mexico -- and increasingly intermarried with Mexicans. Little by little, they abandoned the Korean language. Alberto King, a 23-year-old college student in Tijuana, said that although his mother looked Korean she spoke only Spanish. Her own parents had stopped speaking Korean.

"The Mexicans at first would not accept them. So their own parents decided to cut off the language and just talk Spanish," King said. "It went really badly for them because of the language."

Fermin Kim said fights were a part of life in grade school, when they would be called chinos (Chinese). In the beginning, intermarriage was strongly discouraged. He said he had a Mexican girlfriend and his grandparents reacted by asking, " 'Where did you find her?' They got mad." He ended up marrying another Korean Mexican. David Kim, his fellow chaperon, said that despite being one of the older Henequen, he married a Mexican woman.

For decades, as Korea struggled under foreign rule and wars, the Korean Mexicans were largely forgotten. Various estimates place their numbers at up to 30,000. But as South Korea began to prosper economically and the centennial of the Koreans' arrival in Yucatan drew near, attention focused on them.

They were visited by South Korean politicians and were invited to their ancestors' homeland. Korean Mexicans were flown to South Korea to get special job training. South Koreans built hospitals and schools in Mexico and were feted by Mexican officials.

"When the centennial happened in 2005, we almost got celebrity treatment," Fermin Kim said. "That's something we never had in 99 years."

That year, a group of Korean Mexicans was brought by the Korean-American Foundation to Plaza Mexico in Lynwood. The visitors were surprised by how many people of Korean descent live in the Los Angeles area.

"We didn't even know there was such a large Korean community so close by," Fermin Kim said. "We didn't even know there was a Koreatown. We hadn't integrated with Koreans here."

Plaza Mexico, which opened in 2002, was the vision of Donald Chae, a Korean American who grew up among Latinos and who has traveled throughout Mexico. Chae tells people that, "I don't speak Spanish. I speak Mexican."

"I am a Korean American Mexican," he quips. "I'm still waiting for my pasaporte."

The center was built with Mexican stone and boasted touches like a swap meet with a facade designed after the colonial-era governor's mansion in Guadalajara and a shrine for the Virgin of Guadalupe.

Chae said that when he spoke to the young Korean Mexicans, he could tell they were surprised he spoke Spanish fluently. He in turn was struck by how strongly their identity was rooted.

"They're real Mexicans," Chae said. "They have a real Mexican way of talking. They use a lot of doble sentidos (double entendres). Mexicans use a lot of double meanings."


But he said it was important that they learn about the other culture that informed their lives and those of their ancestors.

"When you don't know your culture," Chae said, "you get lost."

By 6:30 p.m., the spectators had taken their seats. A Korean woman dressed in a blue sequined dress sang the American and Korean national anthems. A few of the Korean Mexican youths tried to gamely mouth the words of the latter.

The consul generals of Mexico and Korea gave speeches. Four of the Korean Mexicans performed a tea ceremony as Hyun Kim led them with hand signals. Then a Mexican folkloric group and a Korean dance troupe took turns on the stage.

Dressed in their mix-and-match outfits, the young Korean Mexicans looked on with mouths slightly agape as the teenage Korean girls used wooden sticks to rapidly beat elevated drums.

Then the 20 Korean Mexicans took the stage.

Arirang, Arirang, Arariyo. . . . The song describing a woman, looking as her husband walked away up a crooked road.

The audience smiled and clapped. Moments later, the youths jumped into the Mexican song they had decided to sing: "Cielito Lindo."

From the brown Sierras,

Heavenly one, they come descending,

A pair of dark eyes, heavenly one. . . . .

Ay ay ay ay, sing and don't cry. . . . .

As people streamed out of the hall, Rafael Kim said he was moved most of all by the Korean girls who danced so gracefully and full of purpose, as if they knew full well who they were.

"You feel a sensation of pride, because you're a Korean descendant, just like them," he said in Spanish. "I see them dance so beautifully, and that I didn't know of things like this as a child, it makes me a little sad. It's a feeling of discovered feelings."

As he walked away, Woo Jun Lee, a stocky middle-aged Korean American, ran over to Kim so they could all take a picture together.

Waving his hand, Lee cried out: "Hey, paisano!"

hector.becerra@latimes.com

8.18.2008

"The Indigenous Intifada"



The trigger of South America
By Hamid Golpira


The Indigenous Intifada of the Americas has won another victory.

With 90 percent of the ballots counted, it seems that Bolivian President Evo Morales received over 60 percent of the vote in Sunday’s recall election, ensuring that he will stay in office until his term ends in 2011.

Morales, who is a member of the Aymara ethnic group, became the first indigenous leader of Bolivia in nearly 500 years after his inauguration in 2006.

The indigenous people of Bolivia and the rest of South America have suffered through five centuries of oppression, which began with the European invasion and conquest of the Americas.

In Bolivia, the situation has been terrible for the Native Americans, even though it is one of the few indigenous majority countries of the Americas.

The “white” upper class of Bolivia has monopolized power for 500 years while the indigenous people have lived under a caste system which places them at the bottom as virtual serfs.

The upper class of Bolivia identify themselves as descendents of the white European settlers, although many are actually light-skinned mestizos, so there is also an element of denial in the country’s racist caste system, which is often the case in racial caste systems.

The indigenous people of Bolivia were kept down, their rights were trampled upon, and they were given little or no access to social services, adequate health care, and higher education. In addition, they were rarely given the opportunity to acquire higher-paying jobs and most are still not even earning a proper living wage in Bolivia, which is one of the poorest countries in the Americas, despite its vast natural gas reserves.

The “white” upper class retained their privileged status through this caste system, which marginalized the Native Americans for centuries.

And these are the same people who are behind the efforts to oust Morales and the illegal autonomy referendums recently held in the provinces in the eastern lowlands of the country, where many of the “whites” live.

Morales’ victory in the 2005 presidential election struck fear into the hearts of the “white” upper class because they realized that they were beginning to lose power.

When Morales took office and began implementing his plan to restore the indigenous peoples’ rights, rewrite the Constitution, redistribute wealth to the poor, and renationalize the country’s hydrocarbon assets, the “white” community became even more desperate.

The illegal autonomy referendums were a part of their counter-revolutionary response to the threat to their power and privilege.

Che Guevara was killed in Bolivia and his remains were interred in a secret grave there for 30 years until they were discovered in 1997 and sent to Cuba for reburial in a more dignified grave.

It is said that the revolutionary sprit of Che lives on in Bolivia.

Indeed, in one of his first acts after taking office in 2006, Morales hung up a portrait of Che Guevara in the presidential palace.

Commenting on the importance of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Frantz Fanon once said: “Congo is the trigger of Africa.”

And across the ocean, in Africa’s twin continent, South America, which separated when Pangaea broke up millions of years ago, Congo has a sister country, Bolivia.

For today, Bolivia is the trigger of South America.

Bolivia is now the center of the Indigenous People’s Movement of the Americas.

The winds of change are blowing across the continent of South America, from Tiahuanaco to Ecuador and Venezuela.

In the early 1990s, the Native Americans decided that they could no longer tolerate the fact that an official holiday named Columbus Day was being celebrated on October 12 to commemorate the arrival of the European conquistadors and settlers, so they renamed the day Indigenous People’s Day.

On October 12, 1992, Native Americans across the hemisphere united from Kalaallit Nunaat to Tierra del Fuego to celebrate Indigenous People’s Day, on the very same day the European settlers were celebrating the 500th anniversary of the invasion of the Americas. Many say it was the first time that the Indigenous People of the Americas had ever united for a common purpose.

Something really changed on that day and things will never be the same. The collective consciousness of Native Americans was reawakened.

At one of the many ceremonies held throughout the double continent of America on October 12, 1992, a traditionalist Native American made a speech in which he said that most of the Indigenous People of the Americas believe that time is cyclical.

He went on to say that Indigenous People’s Day 1992 marked the end of the 500-year cycle of oppression for Native Americans and the beginning of a positive cycle for the Indigenous People of Great Turtle Island, which is a very ancient name for the double continent of America first mentioned in the Walam Olum of the Lenni Lenape nation.

In addition, according to the Maya calendar, the current time cycle began in 3114 BC and ends on December 21, 2012.

Bolivia is the trigger of South America. And Bolivia is also the trigger of all of Great Turtle Island.

And what will happen when the trigger is pulled and the shot is fired? Changes that we can’t imagine.

As the I Ching says: “Change proves true on the day it is finished.”

Original source: http://www.tehrantimes.com/index_View.asp?code=175270

Much respect to Intelligent Indigena for the post.